The International breaks esports prize pool record for the seventh year in a row

It just keeps getting bigger, year after year.

Photo via Valve

The Dota 2 community has made history yet again, for the seventh consecutive year.

The International has broken its own prize pool record, setting yet another all-time high for the esports industry as a whole. The Dota 2 community helped achieve this goal through the 2018 Battle Pass crowdfunding campaign, which has so far contributed more than $24 million in prize money. The official count surpassed $24,787,916 today, the final figure for TI7 at the end of its own crowdfunding period.

This event also marks the fourth consecutive year that the all-time record has been broken—with Dota 2 having had the crown since TI4. After the highly-successful TI3, the annual world championship tournament saw a humongous surge in popularity as well as an increase in payout.

For the first time in the game’s history, this year’s crowdfunding campaign was somewhat up in the air for a fairly significant amount of time. Several weeks prior to the breaking of the record, the prize pool was actually lagging behind that of TI7 by around 2.5 to three percent. At one point, it was even behind by as much as 10 percent, before developer and publisher Valve Corporation released the Battle Level and Treasure Bundle on June 28. It wasn’t until the release of the third Battle Pass loot box, called the Immortal Treasure III, that the pot finally went past the goalpost set last year.

There’s still some time for the community to contribute even more cash to the cause—but with no more Battle Pass incentives remaining, we might not see another large surge. Perhaps it might be time for Valve to bring back the stretch goals that were last present on the TI5 Compendium, in order to boost sales one last time.

The International 8 is set to take place from Aug. 15 to 25 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver, Canada. This is the first time that the tournament will be taking place outside of Valve’s home state of Seattle since TI2, and the first time that it’ll be held outside of the United States.